The developers said the planned hotel, casino, spa and cinema project on Pyramid Highway has been redesigned to look like an old ranch house based on public feedback.
Officials say a $100 million project by Peppermill Casino and lobbyist Harvey Whitemore is being reviewed by Spax’s planners, who will be able to make suggestions for change.
Because several approvals were required, planners could not provide a timetable for the Lazy 8 project north of the Lazy 5 Regional Park. If the city’s planners are satisfied with the design, it will go to the Planning Board for approval and then to the Sparks City Council.
“This is not pepper mill. It’s a whole new design with a ranch-like feel,” said Carlos Vazquez, CEO of Art Associates Advertising and a spokesperson for Pepper Mill and Whitemore. “We want to get started as soon as possible.”
Many nearby residents have spoken out against the project, and John Ascua’s Nugget Hotel Casino has funded a website against it.
The Lazy 8 plan calls for an 18,000-square-foot casino the size of Gold Dust West in downtown Reno, which is larger than the Tamarack Junction in southern Reno.
“We listened to everything we heard, attended every public meeting, watched every public survey,” Vazquez said. “We realized we had the wrong product for the public. We redesigned it to fit what you see now. It fits better with the environment and the community.”
Whitemore brought the hotel casino plan to a meeting of Spain’s spring advisory board in September 2004, and was criticized by nearby residents against the nearby casino.
At the time, the project was estimated to be $35 million to $45 million, and the new proposal became an even bigger project. Casino opponents said the change in plan could not stop their efforts to defeat the project. 안전놀이터
“There is still no limit for games within 50 yards of a home,” said Roy Adams of Springs, Spain, who led the petition with more than 5,000 signatures. “There is still no limit for games within 200 yards of parks and libraries. People still oppose it.”
Another vocal opponent, Spark’s Shirley Bertschinger, agreed.
“This is more of a ruse for Mr. White to avoid opposition to him,” Birtsinger said, “and the opposition is not against him, it is against the casino.”
Vázquez said the new project was designed to prevent people walking to the front door from a two-story partially underground parking complex off the pyramid from visiting the casino.
“There are separate entrances to all the facilities, including buffets, coffee shops, arcades, and movie theaters,” he said.
“The family can’t see the game because it’s right into the family domain.”
He said the 200-room hotel will include 20 suites. In addition, the 20.5-acre project will include a day spa open to the public, some small retail stores, restaurants, and about $1 million in donations to the community, he said.
Casinos, theatres, and hotels are 90 feet tall, while other buildings are limited to 35 feet.
Vasquez said, “Games aside, we have great amenities for the region.”
Whitemore plans to use eligibility for casinos in his Red Hawk development for Lazy 8 Casino.
Whitemore plans to sell the land, which it owns in a private partnership with one of the Pepper Mill owners, to the company. Whitemore said it will have a 10 to 20 percent stake in the business, which will be donated to the University of Nevada Reno.
“All proceeds will go to UNR,” said Whittermore.
Whitemore also holds a casino license obtained from the now-closed Old Reno Casino, which he said was unclear where it was being used.
Alex Newman of the Reno Gazette-Journal wrote for this article.